|One of the top starting pitchers in the majors - Uniform # 56
Since joining the Chicago White Sox late in 2000 Mark Buehrle has become the team’s mound workhorse. The 6 ft 2 inch 200+ pounds of grit and determination led the AL in innings pitched in 2004 with 245 1/3 and has pitched more innings during the last four seasons than any other major league pitcher.
Mark Buehrle has been the White Sox’s opening day starter three straight years, 2002-04, and Sox pitching coach Don Cooper says, ‘Mark’s slated to start this year’s opener again.’
And indeed, on April 4 2005 Buehrle started the White Sox season opener at home and pitched a brilliant 2-hitter, no-runs thru 8 innings as the Sox topped Cleveland 1-0. As good as Buehrle pitched Indians starter Jake Westbrook matched him pitch-for-pitch. THrowing mainly sinker balls Westbrook pitched a complete game, allowed 4-hits, walked one and oneearned runs. The Sox run scored on a double by Paul Konerko, a fly out moved him to 3rd, Aaron Rowand hit a grounder to Cleveland new shortstop Jhonny Peralta who dropped the ball, Konerko scoring the game's only run. One out and a single followed, then a DP.
In 1998 after starring at Jefferson Missouri Junior College Buehrle was drafted by the Chi-Sox in the 38th round. He worked the mound in lower-minors and then started the 2000 season for Birmingham, going 8-4, 2.28 ERA, before finishing up the year at 4-1, 4.21 ERA in Chicago for the parent team.
He hasn’t posted a 20-win season, not yet anyway, However, he hung-up a 19-12, 3.58 earned run average in 2002 and was picked for that season All Star Game. The 26-year-old Mark Buehrie throws a high-volume fastball and slips in a mean back-door cutter. He is 69-45 since joining the majors in 2000.
‘Buehrle has done this in a time period in which U.S. Cellular Field has been transformed from a pitcher’s Park into a bad joke for pitchers,’ wrote Phil Rogers of The Chicago Tribune Newspaper. Rogers went on, ‘There were 272 homers hit at Cell last season, 39 more than any other park in the majors… at least 218 there in each of the last five seasons.’
We @ baseballhistorian.com reminisce that Mark Buehrle is a lot like the early years of Hall of Famers Bob Lemon, Warren Spahn and Robin Roberts. He just goes out without complaining about dimensions, innings worked, and pitches smart, and gives it his total effort… and, wastes little time between pitches.
Chicago White Sox History by Baseball Historian